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Recent Acquisitions: Paul Sample, Old Ledyard Bridge, 1954

Hood Quarterly, autumn/winter 2011-12

Through the generosity of Everett Parker, Class of 1952, and his two sons, David and William—also Dartmouth graduates—the Hood Museum of Art was able to add an important painting to its extensive collection of works by Paul Sample, Dartmouth Class of 1920 and artist-in-residence at the college from 1938 until 1962. Sample gained particular acclaim for his scenes of rural life in New Hampshire and Vermont, especially in winter. Such images have long held special significance and appeal for Dartmouth alumni and students. In fact, Sample painted this work—which depicts the old Ledyard Bridge with Lewiston, Vermont, in the distance—as a demonstration during a Dartmouth Alumni Association fundraising event held in Chicago in January 1954. The winner of the event’s raffle, Arthur I. Appleton, Class of 1936, Tuck 1936, was awarded the original painting, which remained in his family until 2010.

Built in 1859, the covered bridge that linked Hanover, New Hampshire, with Lewiston, Vermont (a former village within the township of Norwich), was the fourth span on this site and was named for world traveler John Ledyard, who attended Dartmouth in 1772–73. After its removal in 1934, the subsequent span opened the following year. That bridge was replaced, in turn, by the current Ledyard Bridge, completed in 1999. Since the covered bridge had been gone Karoo Ashevak, Untitled (Spirit Figure), about 1970–74, carved whalebone inlaid with walrus ivory, baleen, and stone. Bequest of Evelyn Nef; 2011.25.1. Paul Sample, Old Ledyard Bridge, 1954, oil on canvas. Purchased through gifts from Everett Parker, Class of 1952; David J. Parker, Class of 1982; and William Bannister-Parker, Class of 1984; 2011.2 for twenty years when Paul Sample painted his composition, he would have relied on memory and historic photographs as a reference. As was often his method, he used a degree of artistic license in the configuration of motifs to strengthen the work’s visual impact.

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